How to Encourage Healthier Eating for Kids in 2013



2013 is an opportunity create healthy, life-long habits for adults and kids. With the alarming adolescent obesity rate in our country, teaching kids healthy nutrition is just one way to make 2013 a better year.

There are two ways to improve a child and adult’s nutrition:

  1. Add fruits and vegetables to each meal
  2. Reduce Sugar

This may be simpler than you think. We’ve included some ideas here to help you get started. We’d love to hear your ideas too so leave us a message on our Facebook page so we can share with others raising kids in the Richmond area!

  1. Cut vegetables in small bite-sized pieces and pack in a lunch with a low-fat dip or yogurt.
  2. Add finely diced carrots or other veggies to pizza sauce, spaghetti sauce, omelets, mac ‘n cheese, and other entrees. They won’t even know it’s in there!
  3. Add extra fruit to a smoothie made from fat-free milk. Mix and match fruits to make it fun.
  4. Add sliced bananas, strawberries, or other fruits to top cereals.
  5. Offer crunchy vegetables as a side for breakfast – kids will love the unusual idea and may eat more veggies.
  6. Add spinach to a grilled cheese sandwich (it will cook away as the cheese melts and kids won’t notice it’s there but they’ll like it!).
  7. Engage kids in preparing food and they’re more likely to eat it. They can help peel and slice fruits or vegetables. Let them create a colorful display of fruits or vegetables on a fun plate.
  8. Take kids shopping and let them choose unusual fruits and vegetables so they try something new. Ask them to choose 2-3 fruits for lunches for the week and they’ll be more interested.
  9. Add bananas or minced apples to peanut butter sandwiches.
  10. Create a fruit kabob – kids love to eat from a stick so skewer grapes, blueberries, banana slices, pineapple, and even cheese bites!
  11. Keep a bowl of bite-sized fruits and a bowl of cut-up vegetables on a low-shelf of the refrigerator to make them easy to reach.
  12. Instead of trying to keep kids from eating high-fat, high-sugar snacks from the pantry, just don’t buy them – leave them at the store! Stock up on healthier foods for them to choose from.
  13. Visit a local farmer’s market to show them how food is grown and where it comes from.
  14. Invest in fun lunch containers that make it easy to pack nutrition lunches.


You will find some great lesson plans and ideas to teach children healthier nutrition on the USDA website.

Websites like Lap Top Lunches also offer innovative lunch packing ideas – a small investment that goes a long way to teach your child better nutrition. You’ll also find great tips to help you pack the healthiest lunches.

Bento boxes make it easier to pack small bites of healthy foods that stay fresh and separated like most kids want too. (CK does not endorse nor promote these products, but only provides them as examples of what is available).

Make lunch fun, teach by example, and enjoy exploring new foods and flavors frequently. It’s a lesson that will stay with your kids for a lifetime!